Barn Fire Kills 12 Horses, 11 Others Taken to Vet

The damage to the barn and
stables left by the fire that a Florida equestrian center. Photo via Andrew Ruiz/Twitter

The South Florida Trotting Center saw tragedy this week when a massive fire erupted on the property. The fire started in a large barn just before midnight last night. Around 27 horses were inside at the time, WPTV reports. Firefighters on the scene say that the flames were shooting as high as 30 feet.

According to WPTV, horse trainer Roman Lopez was inside the barn at the time of the fire and heard the horses making noise. Smoke billowed out when he entered their stables. Lopez told WPTV that he tried saving the horses, but was too late for some, with the fire and smoke consuming the barn. “A friend of mine came over and tried to open the gates and let them out, but it was just too tough,” Lopez said. “The roof started to come down and the horses were just on fire and you just freak out; you don’t know which way to go.”

The owner of the Lake Worth, Fla. equestrian center held a press conference this morning, during which it was revealed that “12 horses are dead, while 11 others were taken to a local animal hospital for smoke inhalation and burns. Two of the injured horses are in critical condition.” Two firefighters who were at the scene were also taken to the hospital; their condition is unknown.

The cause of the fire is still being investigated. Officials, however, told WPTV that South Florida Trotting Center had “two things working against them: a roof collapse and the elements inside that included hay, horse feed and sleeping materials.”

Those wishing to make a donation for the care of the injured horses may do so at the County Line Feed & Supply store. It is located at 9293 Highway 441 in Boynton Beach.




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